whats this bug?
Hi there, great idea for a site… Glad I found it because I’m curious what this bug is. Earlier in the year I was outside a coffee shop talking to some friends here in South-Eastern Ontario, and I heard some wierd buzzing behind me. I looked to see what it was, and sitting in the middle of the parking lot was this…uhm….thing (see attached photos). It was huge, I don’t think I’ve seen an insect this big in my life (outside of a zoo anyways). It was about 3 inches long, and an inch or so wide. I placed a coffee cup beside it for size reference (2nd photo). It tried several times to fly away, but it was injured and only made it a few feet. If you could identify it, I’d like to know more. Is it native to this area?
Brian Graves

Hi Brian,
We always love getting new photos of Giant Water Bugs, also known, deservedly, as Toe-Biters. They range across the North American Continent, and have relatives worldwide. A Thai species is about twice the size. Toe-Biters are the largest American True Bugs, and are larger than our largest Beetles. They are equally at home in the air or water. Yours is a Lethocerus species.

Well geez, its a pretty common thing then… I’ve just never seen one before, at least if I have it wasn’t anywhere near this big. Thanks for the info and the quick reply and keep up the work with the great website!

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